An earlier version of this post appeared back in June, 2014, to be exact, resulting in receiving several well-written, probing essays, from many other individuals that have a strong intellectual interest in Anne Rice’s books. Many of her more casual readers also have very interesting, thoughtful perspectives about the different facets of her works. Anne Rice has one of the most versatile readerships, which is what has made her such a successful writer in terms of the popular fiction market. Many popular underestimate the intelligence of the layman because most people focus their scholarly attention on more scholarly-acceptable works, like Jame Joyce’s Portrait of the Artist As a Young Man. It is certainly a very interesting,involved, on reflective work on the psyche of the artist, who is entering the confusing throes of adulthood, yet it isn’t something that you’d see someone enjoying purely for being something entertaining or enthralling to read.
The genius of Anne Rice’s work is that she can write both for entertainment and also for deep, cerebral stimulation, for more intellectually-disposed readers. And most people unwittingly are really doing both, even if they never considered themselves to be deep readers of Anne Rice’s works.
I apologize sincerely to those waiting impatiently for a clear response, as to whether or not this daunting, project of mine will ever see the light of day. Your submissions are securely stowed away, on a specially marked email folder, on my main email address’ virtual storage area. I will be getting back to you, well before May, 2015, but I am not starting serious editorial/formatting work on the book, till April, so I think the best date to really begin earnestly putting everything together, and being sure it is top notch stuff will be late-February, into early-March, granting all writers a fair amount of time, to revise anything that requires proper, thorough revision.
The delay works in everyone’s favor, allowing anyone seeing this for the first time ample time to write their own essay for possible submission. More important, it grants me the time to write a timely essay about the psychological dynamics of the Sleeping Beauty Trilogy, and include the forthcoming novel Beauty’s Kingdom into that essay.
More about the compendium Back in early 2013 when I was first putting together my psychoanalytic essay about Anne Rice’s works (currently available for purchase via Amazon), I insanely dreamed about the absurd idea of possibly extending my lone essay into a much larger, more ambitious scholarly volume about Anne Rice’s work. Of course, the sheer dearth of such volumes in either the literary criticism databases like Ebscohost, or volumes published by different colleges and made available for purchase at various bookstores, persuasively proved to me that publishing such a compendium was quickly becoming a necessity.
Even though I knew the idea then would be a rational one, I still filed the idea in the back of my head. After a rather dissatisfying turn of events with trying to find some kind of entry-level job in the publishing industry (and expending all my creative stamina), Anne Rice’s announcement about the forthcoming release of Prince Lestat served as a psychological clarion call to action. I suddenly remembered those ridiculous dreams of publishing a serious collection of critical essays about Anne Rice’s works, and realized that 2014- the same year Prince Lestat was slated for release- was the year that a new critical essay compendium about Anne Rice’s works would be published. I had already formed a very successful group, called Lestat’s Book Coven, that has been helping to provoke deeper analysis of Anne Rice’s earlier Vampire Chronicle books. Now, it was time to release a new scholarly book to hopefully revive even more scholarly or intellectual interest in Anne Rice’s whole oeuvre of works.
In earnest, I started tinkering with ideas of how to seek out essays. To be perfectly frank, I don’t have much clout in the realm of literary scholars. They are an unreachable pantheon of esteemed luminaries, proffering their well-earned PHDs in some esoteric region of literary study. Then, I realized the one thing that has always irked me, as an undergrad English major, was the fact that all the essays that I was reading were not accessible the public. Now, the academic community was not setting strict boundaries against laymen or laywomen that would deprive them of the chance to access such essays. Rather, the biggest obstacle, preventing many readers from finding these critical essays, was a slew of stigmas about critical works about books. Some people believe that analyzing literature is indeed an esoteric trade, interesting only to those people that can tease out the ponderous prose of critical essays, riddled with strange, verbose jargon, and discern the core argument of meaning of that essay.
Yet, I have been the person that has read various scholarly books about Jk Rowling’s Harry Potter series, and was a huge fan of the works of John Granger. For those who are unfamiliar with John Granger, he is a lesser known literary critic that has done something very unprecedented in the academic community. The bulk of essays that he produces are written not for the scholarly community, but rather for fans of the works that he is analyzing. He has actually spoke at many Harry Potter fan conventions because of the fact that his well-written scholarly works are read and enjoyed by the fans themselves, and not only some small coterie of literary scholars.
After consulting some of his works again and discerning the way he has make the formerly arcane art of literary criticism appealing and accessible to a much wider audience beyond the boundaries of academia, I knew that it was in my power to draw on my same zeal and passion for Anne Rice’s works, and attempt to bring forth that same kind of intelligent, cogent discussion about the under-explored realm of Anne Rice’s works. When I read nearly all ten or eleven of the Vampire Chronicle books and most of her other noteworthy works in under a year (an impressive feat for a chronically slow reader), I knew that there were wide ocean of deeper meaning that was not being exhumed by literary critics. Instead, the tides of dismissive criticism about Anne Rice’s works- the chidings of silly literary snobs- deprecatingly say that her prose is much too verbose, her characters are far too exaggerated and prosaic, and her plots are either too derivative or are the substance of a campy sixties or seventies horror film. And, this large wave of snobbish and pretentious criticism has effectively made scholars stay far, far away from Anne Rice’s work.
With the planned release of the tentatively titled Coven of the Articulate: Critical Essay Compendium About Anne Rice’s Works, I want the discussion about the true depth of Anne Rice’s works to return once more to the world of meaning and psychological intrigue that underpins Anne Rice’s works.
In order to make this book become a reality, I am imploring those that have ever envisioned themselves writing a critical essay about Anne Rice’s works to please think about possibly adding an essay to this work in progress. There are a few requirements and several critical essay standards that you must abide by, but I am not looking for all my writers to somehow have a PHD or English Master’s Degree in their possession. If I want this work to be appealing to those that don’t usually read literary criticism, having submissions from anyone that has the ability to write something that has clarity and depth will serve as enough qualifications for me to consider publishing your essay.
**How to have your essay possibly added to this compendium? First, I am developing a Facebook Group, much like Lestat’s Book Coven, which will be aptly named Lestat’s Scholar Club. This is where you will be able to communicate directly with me and others that have an interest in possibly submitting an essay to Coven of the Articulate. I feel that the format of utilizing a Facebook group will be far more manageable than relying on emails, which sometimes does not lend itself well with free-flowing conversation (that is a requirement, when pondering and discussing deeper things, such as the underlying meaning of Anne Rice’s works, or the subtext of her writing).
For those unaware or need a refresher on how to write literary criticism, I am open to having Google Hangouts with members of the Lestat Scholar Club to give you all very clear explanation on how to write effective literary criticism! This will still happen, and more information on writing workshops, for interested scholars can contact me at email@example.com for more information.
**All questions, concerns can always be emailed to me directly at narniafanatic(at)gmail(dot)com.**
Requirements for Essays-
1) All works must pertain to Anne Rice’s works, and discussing this issue or a slew of other issues in a substantive, innovative fashion. Also, the construction of this essay must follow conventional essay standards, and thus include (1) a clear, effective thesis statement, (2) well-organized body paragraphs that are organized in a logical way, (3) ample textual evidence from Anne Rice’s books that you are analyzing, (4) wide array of quotes from other literary critics (use critics that you not just agree with, but also critics that you might disagree with to help accentuate the stronger points of your argument).
**You do not specifically need quotes, plucked from other scholars, but I think it is advisable, considering that it will help you to build a much more stable, interesting essay, in lieu of what other scholars have already deduced about a certain element or passage in Anne Rice’s books.**
2) All essays must abide by the guidelines of MLA format, when scholarly quotes are being cited within your essay (quotes that are not cited properly are considered hearsay and plagiarism)- You may consult this wonderfully written packet about MLA format, which I used the majority of the term as a writing tutor in my undergraduate years at my alma matter. I am sure they would appreciate me using this guide, once again, to help ensure that all essays for publications are written in a professional manner.
If you have any questions about MLA Format, please feel free, again, to email me any questions, about this at firstname.lastname@example.org.
3) Essays that are either too long-winded, inscrutable, messy, and effectively illogical and unpersuasive to the reader will not be accepted. Of course, you will be given the opportunity to revise your work till it is something that is deemed acceptable for publication.
4) All essays must be 10-30 pages in length. Nothing should either be shorter or longer. Also, your bibliography (yes, it is imperative that you have a bibliography with the works and essays you consulted for this essay) will be counted among those pages, so your essay portion should really only be 8-22 pages.
**Any of Anne Rice’s works can be analyzed, including those written by AN Roquelaire and Anne Rampling.**
Information about Due Date for Submissions:
All essays or contributions, for now, are due May- June 2015. The due date is not finalized, as of yet,but I wish to have this volume released by May,June, or July 2015. I am delaying the due date, for the sole purpose of writing a new essay, about Prince Lestat, in connection with Teilhard de Chardin’s theories about the noosphere. Also, I am incorporating a section about Beauty’s Kingdom into the book ( as part of a larger essay on the Sleeping Beauty Trilogy, and our culture’s resurgent, though slightly abashed reaction to erotica fiction).
Please contact me through email at narniafanatic(at)gmail(dot)com, if you are interested i n contributing your work here! I have not finalized any details yet about compensation, so for now, you’re going to have to see this project as something done purely for the enjoyment and satisfaction of writing something scholarly. I am not doing this primarily for profit, because this project will probably not be very profitable.
I apologize sincerely that I do not have the financial means to properly compensate everyone for their work. If things fare better for me in the wildly turbulent world of the job market, I could perhaps properly compensate everyone financially for everyone’s work, and that is something I really wish I could do. But unfortunately, this job environment is teaching me that you must slave away for no profit for one-two years, especially if you are endeavoring to pursuit the thing you love most. It is a bitterly disenchanting world for writers these days, and no one has ever decided to write this kind of stuff with the thought that writing critical essays will somehow make them a millionaire. That is not reality, and I apologize sincerely that I cannot provide that type of compensation. Let it be known, though, that your work will always be valued by not just me, but also I’m sure Anne Rice will be very thrilled by this entire project!
Thanks again for your interest in this ridiculously lofty idea! Please send your essay idea or any questions to my email address at email@example.com, if you are interested in joining the Lestat Scholar Club, or you wish to berate me (in a civil manner) about not settling any clear amount of financial compensation for your work. I hope that this work becomes a reality, and that Lestat will have more reason to stick around longer than just October 28, 2014! (which has now been verified, as the sequel to Prince Lestat will be Blood Paradise.)